‘Fear and threats’: Mexico hits back after Trump pressures automakers

Mexican government ‘categorically rejects’ attempts to scare off investors but effects seem clear as future Ford plant – and job hopes – are left an empty shell

Mexico has hit back in the verbal trade war with Donald Trump, hitting out at the use of “fear or threats” to deter companies from investing in the country.

The US president-elect has threatened to slap import tariffs on US automaker General Motors for importing cars it makes in Mexico and Japan’s Toyota for planning a new factory there.

Ford also announced that it was cancelling a $1.6bn new factory in the northern state of San Luis Potosi that had been criticised by Trump, though the company said the decision was business-related.

Without mentioning Trump or any government, Mexico’s economy ministry nonetheless said in a statement that it “categorically rejects any attempt to influence the investment decisions of companies on the basis of fear or threats”.